New Delhi: While a final decision on whether the nationwide lockdown will be lifted on April 14 or not is still awaited, Odisha became the first Indian state to extend the lockdown till April 30 as a pre-emptive measure to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus. Also Read - AIIMS PG Entrance Exams 2020: Admit Cards Issued, Download From

“At this crucial juncture, one has to decide between protecting the lives of people and economic activity. We will recommend to Government of India to extend the national lockdown up to April 30. In addition to this, we will also request the Union Government not to start airline and railway services till April 30,” said a statement from the Odisha government. Also Read - Jan Dhan Yojana News: Know When You Will Receive Rs 500 in Your account

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So far, Odisha has recorded 42 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus, including one patient who succumbed to the infection.

The decision of whether to extend the lockdown will be taken after consulting with the chief ministers of the states in a meeting with PM Modi, scheduled on April 11. Most states are in favour of extending the lockdown considering the steady rise in the numbers of the positive cases. In an all-party meeting on Wednesday, PM Modi hinted that it’s not possible to lift the lockdown at once. It remains to be seen how the situation gets addressed nationally. Meanwhile, the state governments can take adequate steps according to their own exigencies.

Telangana, Rajasthan have already opined in the favour of an extension of the lockdown. Ideally, lockdown can be lifted when there is a steady decline in the number of cases and also when there are kits available for every individual.